While economic growth is persistently high in the last decade at around 6%, the country faces major challenges in providing productive employment, and adequate and affordable social services for the poor and low income population. About 26% of the Philippine population live below the national poverty line, and 63% are vulnerable to poverty with income less than $3 a day a person.
Inclusive growth is the new strategic objective for socio-economic development in the Philippines. For growth to be more inclusive companies need to create jobs and provide affordable services for the poor and low income population. However, while the private sector has been a key contributor to the economic boom in the Philippines, it has yet to fully realize its potential in creating shared value and impact for income groups below the $3 vulnerability line (the base of the income pyramid).
Inclusive businesses are for-profit enterprises whose core business includes the low income segment population in their value chain as consumers, suppliers, distributors or employees -- thereby addressing systemic problems of poverty in scale. Inclusive business companies can be large scale or small enterprises. They are mostly in the growth phase of their business and typically do not seek trade-offs between financial and social returns.
Inclusive business has recently gained further momentum in the Philippines:
The second Inclusive Business Forum for the Philippines will advance knowledge exchange on inclusive business, and provide a platform for companies to engage with investors on possible funding proposals.